SAS Institute Inc. v. World Programming Limited
ORDER granting #703 Motion to Seal #702 PROPOSED SEALED Exhibit - Signed by District Judge Louise Wood Flanagan on 3/24/2017. (Baker, C.)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF NORTH CAROLINA
SAS INSTITUTE, INC.,
WORLD PROGRAMMING LIMITED,
GRANTING WPL’S MOTION
TO FILE REDACTED
VERSION OF WPL’S
THIS MATTER is before the Court on Defendant World Programming Limited’s
(“WPL”) request to redact portions of its Appeal Bond. Because the document in question
relates and refers to sensitive and confidential business information of WPL, which this Court
has previously redacted, Defendant asks that the Court allow WPL to file the document with the
redactions proposed in Exhibit A to this Motion. For the reasons that follow, the Court
GRANTS the Motion to Redact.
To determine whether to grant a request to seal or redact a document, the court must
consider whether “the public’s right of access is outweighed by competing interests.” See
Ashcraft v. Conoco, Inc., 218 F.3d 288, 302 (4th Cir. 2000) (quoting In re Knight Pub. Co., 743
F.2d 231, 235 (4th Cir. 1984)). Although the common law presumes a right to inspect and copy
judicial records and documents, denial of access is within the sound discretion of the court. Id.
To determine whether a party’s interest in sealing or redacting records outweighs the public’s
right to access, a court must engage in a three-part analysis: (1) provide public notice of the
request to redact and allow interested parties a reasonable opportunity to object; (2) consider less
drastic alternatives to redacting the documents; and (3) articulate the specific reasons and factual
findings supporting its decision to redact. See id.; Morris v. Cumberland Cty. Hosp. Sys., Inc.,
No. 5:12-CV-629, 2013 WL 6116861, *1 (E.D.N.C. Nov. 13, 2013).
The applicable standards justify redacting WPL’s document. The public has received
adequate notice of the request to redact because this Motion has been docketed in the public
record, and no objection has been raised in the interim. See In re Knight Pub. Co., 743 at 235.
Additionally, there is no less drastic alternative to redacting the document. Filing the document
in the public record would disclose confidential and commercially sensitive information not
generally known to the public. Simply put, WPL’s interest in preserving the confidentiality of its
financial status outweighs any public interest in its disclosure. Finally, the Court meets the third
prong of the Ashcraft analysis by virtue of the findings delineated in this Order.
For these reasons, WPL’s Motion to Redact is hereby GRANTED.
It is so ORDERED.
United States District Judge
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